Outdoor Water Games for a Group

Water games can be lots of fun when a group of kids are together on a hot summer day, and there are many more options than just a water balloon toss. These games can be a great addition to birthday parties, Vacation Bible School, or other events. Just make sure there are adults or older teenagers around to lead the games and supervise.

Dry, Dry, Wet
This game is played like Duck, Duck, Goose where the kids sit in a circle and one person is “it.” Whoever is “it” walks around the circle, tapping each person on the head and saying “dry, dry, dry…” When the kid wants to pick the next person to be “it,” he or she pours a cup of water over the sitting kid’s head and says “wet.” The wet kid chases the other child around the circle. If the one who was “it” can sit in the empty spot before being tagged, he or she is safe and the wet child becomes “it.”

Wet T-Shirt Relay
The kids are divided into 2 teams to race against each other. A bucket of wet t-shirts is placed at the front of each line, and another bucket is placed a short distance away. The first person in each line must put on a wet t-shirt, run to the empty bucket, remove the t-shirt, and run back to their line to tag the next person.

Raining on my Head
Cut the tops off of 2 gallon-size plastic bags, and poke holes in each bag. A clothes hanger makes holes that are big enough. Divide the kids into 2 teams, and have each team stand in a line. Place a bucket of water at the beginning of each line and an empty bowl at the other end of each line. The kid at the beginning of the line will fill a bag with water and pass it over his or her head to the next person. The bag is passed on down the line-over heads-and poured into the bowl. The empty bag is passed back to the beginning, refilled, and passed again. The team to fill their bowl first wins the game.

Squirt Bottle Shave
Divide the kids into pairs. Have one child in each pair put on a pair of goggles and spread shaving cream on his or her face. The other child is given a water bottle. Each partner stands about 5 feet apart and the “shaver” tries to squirt the shaving cream off of the other’s face. The first team with a clean face wins the game.

Water Balloon Target
Divide kids into 2 teams. One person on each team is given a large bowl to hold over his or her head. The rest of the teams stand about 10 feet away. The distance can be closer or farther, depending on the ages and skills of your group. The kids take turns throwing a water balloon into the bowl. The first team to fill the bowl wins the game.

Water Hose Limbo
Play limbo with the stream of water from a hose. Kids form a line and walk under the water. Each time the line goes through, the hose is lowered. If kids fall or walk into the main water stream, they are out.

Water Balloon Plop
Divide kids into 2 teams. Have enough water balloons so each person can have 1. A short distance away from the teams, place 2 empty buckets or bowls. A child from each team places a water balloon between their legs and tries to walk to the empty buckets. If they make it, they stand over the empty container and let the balloon fall from between their legs into the container. The child then runs back to his or her team to tag the next one in line. If the balloon pops before they get to the container, they simply run back to tag the next person in line. After each child has had a turn, the team with the most water balloons plopped into their bowl wins the game. This game works best if balloons are not filled with much water.

For most kids, the purpose of water games is simply to get wet because nothing feels better on a hot day than some cool water. To help with this, fill any buckets with water right before using them, or store them in the shade until they are ready to be used. Water that has been sitting in the sun for hours will not feel refreshing. Also, prizes are not required since water and bragging rights are fun in themselves, but small prizes for winning teams could be a nice addition.

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